Men struggling with infertility can find it both frustrating and expensive to turn to conventional methods to increase their sperm count. This is completely understandable. If you or your significant other are trying to have a baby and low sperm count or low sperm motility are making it difficult, you can turn to these natural methods to increase your sperm count naturally.
Causes of Low Sperm Count and Low Sperm Motility
Sperm count is detected by the amount of sperm per milliliter of semen collected. In a healthy man, sperm count ranges between 20 million per 150 million sperm per milliliter.
Low sperm count can be caused by a wide variety of factors that can be difficult to pin down. Let’s look through the most common causes to see if they’re familiar to you:
- Cigarette Smoking
Do you smoke? If so, this could be the cause of your low sperm motility. Cigarette smoking does more than damage your lungs. It actually affects the way a sperm functions and greatly lessens that sperm’s ability to fertilize an egg.
- Alcohol Abuse
Men who have a couple of drinks here and there aren’t considered at risk for low sperm count but men who abuse alcohol often experience infertility. It not only decreases sperm count, motility, and function, but also causes erectile dysfunction, further complicating the issue.
- Illicit Drug Use
Men who use drugs are not only at risk for serious health problems, they are also at risk for infertility. Though marijuana isn’t considered a risky drug for most, it can reduce the amount of seminal fluid, thereby reducing fertility.
- Sexually Transmitted Disease
Men who have a sexually transmitted disease may experience infertility due to damage to sexual organs.
- Genetic Conditions
Genetic conditions can also contribute to infertility in men.
- Cystic Fibrosis – Only in very rare cases does cystic fibrosis not cause infertility in men. Unfortunately, most men with this disease are sterile.
- Klinefelter’s Syndrome – This syndrome describes males who were born with an extra X chromosome in theirDNA. Most men with this syndrome experience infertility.
- Kartagener Syndrome – In patients with Kartagener syndrome, sperm is immobilized due to non-functioning cilli in the sexual organs.
- Retrograde Ejaculation
Retrograde ejaculation occurs when sperm redirects back into the urinary bladder instead of releasing through the head of the penis. Medications and surgery can sometimes help in this situation.
Varicocele is enlargement of the veins in the scrotum. This can decrease both sperm motility and count. Surgery is usually enough to correct this problem.
- Heat Exposure
While it’s easy to understand why disease, alcohol abuse or genetic issues can cause low sperm count but what’s this about heat exposure? Do you wear tight underwear? What about your laptop? Is it always directly on your lap? Saunas and Jacuzzis are another issue. Too much heat can kill off sperm cells and decrease overall count.
If you’re a man who enjoys cycling for fitness, it’s great for your overall health but it can also contribute to infertility. Long-distance cycling can cause repeated low-grade trauma to the scrotum and testicles and reduce sperm count and sperm motility.
According to research published by NBC News, obesity can affect male fertility by decreasing sperm count, motility, and quality.
- Environmental Factors
In order to get down to the primary cause of your infertility, it’s important to also think about environmental factors. If you work with hazardous chemicals, radiation or metals, you may be at increased risk for low sperm count.
- Low Testosterone
Low testosterone is another contributing factor in low sperm count. Without adequate levels of testosterone, sperm count goes way down and sperm motility decreases substantially.
- Nutritional Deficiencies
Low zinc and vitamin D levels can also lower testosterone levels and lead to infertility.
How to Increase Your Sperm Count Naturally
Despite the many causes of low sperm count, there are plenty of ways to increase your sperm count naturally. These include diet, supplements, and lifestyle changes.
Diet is an important factor in every part of your life. If your diet isn’t healthy, your sperm won’t be either. If you’re ready to be a father, cut the junk out of your diet and load up on whole food like green, leafy vegetables, whole grains, fruit, meat, and fish. A balanced diet can address any underlying nutritional deficiencies and increase your sperm count naturally.
Zinc deficiency is a common cause of low testosterone in men. Adding a zinc supplement to your diet can help. Vitamin C also plays a role in healthy sperm production and fertility. Never go overboard on supplements, however. Use them only as directed and talk with your doctor if you have any serious medical conditions or are taking prescription medication.
- Lifestyle Changes
To increase the number of sperm in your semen ejaculate, it is also important to make a few lifestyle changes. This means quitting smoking, cutting back on alcohol, changing your diet, and losing weight. Once you get your body back in balance, your ability to father a child should greatly increase. And you will definitely need that extra energy when the little tyke arrives!
These natural methods should help increase your sperm count and sperm motility. Once there’s enough sperm in your semen ejaculate, you should be able to father a child much more easily. Remember, infertility is a couple’s issue. Whatever the cause for your low sperm count, it doesn’t reflect on you as a man. If these natural methods don’t seem to work for you, get in touch with a fertility doctor about some more conventional options.